❮Epub❯ ➜ Tumbledown A Novel ➛ Author Robert Boswell – Motyourdrive.co.uk


10 thoughts on “Tumbledown A Novel

  1. says:

    MYSTERY RIDE was Boswell s crowning achievement, a sharp, ironic, yet surprisingly sensitive novel about relationships marriages, lovers, parent offspring, friendships, as well as an incisive peek into matters of mental health In his latest novel, set near San Diego, 2008, Boswell explores the world of mentally emotionally challenged individuals and their caretakers counselors, rendered with an eagle eye and a tender heart Peopled with well defined, original characters, it revolves around the theme of keeping your grip while life tumbles down around you, and aiming to encounter a slip of hope and normality within the chaos of a broken world Every sane person has to find every day some manner of accommodating the impossible, some way of covering up for the failures of the rational world This might actually be a reasonable definition of sanity The story is set at the fictional Onyx Springs Rehabilitation and Therapeutic Center, one of the largest treatment centers in the US, which houses dormitories for the high risk clientele, and an outpatient facility Many of them come together at the sheltered workshop a pantyhose packaging workshop that allow patients to earn money and learn assembly line skills, preparing them to function semi independently The characters engage, collaborate, and collide in a circling and revealing narrative that allows the reader to witness a share of their all consuming lives Thirty three year old James Candler is an affable, attractive therapist, a yearning counselor who has, even with his flaws, found his niche in counseling individuals He thought it might be important to be heard than to be understood It was almost certainly the greatest benefit of therapy that someone was willing to listen Now, however, he is pursuing the directorship at Onyx Springs at the persuasion of the vacating director Candler bought an expensive house and a fancy car, steeped himself in financial debt, compelling him to require the lucrative directorship position His fianc , who he barely knows, is about to arrive his sister, who recently lost her husband, is also on her way And James is drawn to a woman he doesn t recognize from his past, and who he counseled once which turned her life around.In the meantime, James s distant past is hurtling toward his present, pressing on him emotionally During James s youth in Arizona, his parents pretentious artists refused to get professional help for his brother, Pook, who was autistic and fragile Pook was also an artist, but his talent was his curse, one that underpins James s journey of self awareness, which takes place through the arc of the book.Billy Atlas, James s best friend since childhood, has emotional problems that have interfered with social adjustment, but he comprehends Candler better than anyone He is temporarily living with James, who has propped Billy up with a supervising job at the shelter, an assignment that Billy may not be emotionally competent to handle Then there are the clients, a variety of characters with their own exquisite torments If the mind is an elaborate system of pulleys and levers and delicate balances, then what happens when a portion is altered or missing The most sympathetic character is Mick Coury, a client of Candler and the workshop, a handsome twenty one year old suffering from schizophrenia When he is on his meds, he functions steadily, but he is dissatisfied with the flattening effect He has had several suicide attempts in the past, but appears to be coping Mick falls head over heels for Karly, a beautiful client, but with the intelligence of a small child Maura Wood, who lives on campus, has superior intelligence, like Mick, but suffers from extreme emotional problems She is desperate for Mick, who is desperate for Karly Everyone struggles for an anchor of something possible, grasping for certainty in this tumbledown world.One must have clear boundaries to work effectively in this field In Tumbledown, boundaries are getting blurred and often violated, and both clients and counselors are potentially headed for a fall Moreover, as the story flows back and forth between characters and time periods, we begin to understand, for example, why James became a counselor, and his desire to reconcile the past with the present Billy strives to capitalize on the present and secure a footing in the future, as a way of erasing the past Mick s greatest desire is to return to the world as it had been before The simplicity of it, the basic clarity of existence, would once belong to him In the dedication at the front of the book, Boswell states This book is dedicated to all the clients who survived my tenure as a counselor and to the one who didn t That line resonates in every character that appears in this narrative, in the precise way that he portrays the domain and the people who inhabit it As a psychiatric nurse for thirty years, I recognize a credible setting from a badly contrived one I am reticent to read a book with this context, due to occupational hazard, but I wasn t disappointed here, as I recognized the authenticity and acumen of Boswell s depictions What sometimes detracts from the story is the densely crowded narrative Most of the characters are introduced early, and they pile on before the reader has an opportunity to absorb them Eventually, they are given dimension and place in the story, but the torpid momentum periodically drained my senses Moreover, Boswell goes off on tangents, and the narrative was weighted with infinitesimal details, and the tension I craved was diminished This was a brave and incisive book about the tyranny of the psyche, but at times it was overcome by a tyranny of verbosity If you stick with it, though, you will be ultimately moved by a compassionate story of humanity, and the conflicting and complex nature of surviving in an impossible world He had a vague belief that the ability to do the right thing and the ability to do the wrong thing were the same ability, and it existed like a great body of water on which floated your personality, and you could never tell just what might seep through, or in which direction a tide might take you.


  2. says:

    What a wonderful, sprawling, exciting book The narrative choices the author makes Unreliable omniscient Brilliant are fascinating and ultimately perfect for the telling of this story If you stumble a bit at the beginning, stay with it relationships and characters become clear soon enough and you will be richly rewarded as the book progresses Many of the characters in TUMBLEDOWN have mental impairments of various types, still others have moral or judgment impairments, and yet the author deals with them all clearly and fairly and in a way that makes us love them all the for their imperfections This may be Boswell s most exciting and inventive book yet.


  3. says:

    Onvan Tumbledown Nevisande Robert Boswell ISBN 1555976492 ISBN13 9781555976491 Dar 448 Safhe Saal e Chap 2013


  4. says:

    Tumbledown is a capacious novel, as big as life and twice as vigorous It is populated with a large array of sharply etched characters whose lives crisscross and oscillate between intimacy and abandon, like the dramatis personae of a Robert Altman movie, as noted on the back cover Boswell, whose gift it is to create convincing and full blooded characters, and who is always a joy to read for shrewd readers who appreciate a novel s depth and psychological underpinnings, and who wrote Mystery Ride, a flat out perfect novel, is here again on top of his game When he is, he is one of the finest writers we have Here his cast of characters revolves around Onyx Springs, a treatment center for the mildly crazy Its main protagonist, counselor James Candler, is a beautifully flawed human who you ll want to follow wherever his poor misbegotten heart takes him But there are many other characters as appealing In the swirling, kaleidoscopic narrative of Tumbledown, Boswell is able to depict how we bounce off each other, stick together or fly apart, how skewed love is, yet how important He is also master here of illuminating ordinary lives, lives lit by the glow of a kitchen light, or by the clinical brightness of a psychiatric clinic This is an extraordinary novel At the end you may want to return to its world to revisit these characters and to savor again the author s precise and elegant prose.


  5. says:

    I enjoyed this book up until the last chapter or so Then I felt things just fell apart maybe that was the point though, who knows.The writing style was interesting each section by a different character overlapped with sections by other characters, providing insights into significant events by multiple characters There were also some jumps back in time to Candler s past, as his family history is revealed to the reader.The story itself follows the lives of a few mentally ill individuals as well as their counselor, Candler referred to mainly by his last name throughout the story There isn t really a significant or intense plot throughout the story, it mainly just follows the day to day lives of the characters and the only conflict occurs because of the romantic feelings that all the characters have for someone else.If you re a little confused at the beginning of the story just stick with it because the characters, and the relationships between them, become clear after a chapter or so And if you think things are confusing at the beginning, just wait until the end I felt like the last chapter just sort of fell apart, maybe that was the point as Candler s life falls apart, the story falls apart as well If you read this book though, it might be better to bail out sometime before the last chapter so the story isn t ruined for you The end section took my rating from a four star book down to a three.


  6. says:

    The main theme of Tumbledown that every day a sane person must figure out ways to deal with the impossible permeates every aspect of this novel by prize winning author Robert Boswell, who uses his experience as a psychological counselor to create realistic but damaged characters who try and fail every day to accommodate the impossible In this novel set in a residential facility, main character, therapist James Candler, is responsible for six young clients, most of them under the age of twenty five.Candler, age thirty three, is neither a psychologist nor a psychiatrist, and his own life is a mess The house he owns outside of San Diego, on which he cannot make the payments, is now under water He has bought a used Porche which he does not need and cannot afford He has spent six years living with a woman he thinks he might have loved, but she has left him and has married someone else Now engaged to a woman with whom his primary contact has been by e mail, he is also at the mercy of his raging desire for another woman who was once a patient His only big achievement on the job has been to set up a sheltered workshop for his clients, hoping that they will eventually be able to get jobs on an assembly line.For the first third of the novel, author Boswell introduces his dysfunctional characters, their past histories, and their problems, not just for the clients but the staff, too one young man lives at the center, hoping that after two tours of duty in Iraq that someone there will declare him unfit to return for another terrifying tour of duty Another disappears into the bathroom so often that Candler has to bribe him to keep him focused on something anything else A gorgeous young client with whom most of the men are in love, is mentally handicapped, with an IQ so low she is unable to function on her own Mick Coury, the client that readers will probably care most about, was a happy, productive teenager until he became the victim of schizophrenia Constantly experimenting with his meds in an effort to become closer to normal, Mick tries to court the gorgeous Karly, having no clue about her life outside the Center and no ability to read the signs or signals she sends.The plot, a collection of vignettes involving the characters and their interactions with each other and with life in general, unwinds on several levels at once The often grotesque ironies in the characters lives and their sometimes bizarre interactions lead, at times, to scenes bordering on farce, but the overlay of the clients dysfunctions and the sympathy these people engender in the reader keep the novel grounded and often emotionally moving The clients irrational behavior represents their best efforts to deal with life s impossibilities, even when they cannot evaluate their actions in relation to the wider world or see that world for the sometimes absurd, illogical place that it is Ultimately, the author summarizes his themes in relation to specific clients and characters in the novel, remarking in the surprising conclusion that though Every reader wants the impossible acts addressed,every sane person also has to find every day some manner of accommodating the impossible, some way of covering up for the failures of the rational world Everybody lives in a tumbledown world and there is no going back Believing in the days of seamless reality is the real madness, the author shows us.


  7. says:

    Boswell is a fine writer but I think this one goes off the rails a bit He plays games with perspective and events perhaps trying to suggest how arbitrary life or death can be But not to great effect And the characters, many patients at a psych clinic, are a bit too disaffected to engender much interest So a mixed bag.


  8. says:

    It is a genuine sadness to finish a book this fine since it means I will not get to look forward to another day reading it.


  9. says:

    James Candler is a mental health counselor who is up for a lucrative promotion as the director of the treatment facility Onyx Springs He is engaged to be married and lives in a large house outside of San Diego The clients of this facility include sweet, mentally impaired Karly, sensitive Mick who can t remember the person he was before his schizophrenia and sarcastic, intelligent Maura who lives on a locked ward after a suicide attempt Robert Boswell changes point of view sometimes multiple times per page so you are inside the heads of most of the characters His writing is dense, descriptive and brilliant My heart broke for Karly since she reminded me of a beautiful student I had taught Her kind nature shined brighter than her inability to repeat a few phrases every morning I think that this book hit too close to home for me sometimes but it is a must read for anyone interested in the human condition.


  10. says:

    A nicely crafted story about the mentally ill, those that treat them, and the profound affect both have on each other Rich with great characters, this book had me hooked early and never let go Boswell does a great job of navigating between the tragic and the comedic At first glance, the story and ideas bounce in what may seem whimsical, but given that the common thread in the story is mental illness, it makes sense For those who are fans of Richard Russo, John Irving, or David Wroblewski, I would highly recommend Tumbledown.


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Tumbledown A Novel summary pdf Tumbledown A Novel, summary chapter 2 Tumbledown A Novel, sparknotes Tumbledown A Novel, Tumbledown A Novel cd30da7 In Tumbledown, Robert Boswell Presents A Large, Unforgettable Cast Of Characters Who Are All Failing And Succeeding In Various Degrees To Make Sense Of Our Often Irrational World In A Moving Narrative Twist, He Boldly Reckons With The Extent To Which Tragedy Can Be Undone, The Impossible AccommodatedAt Age Thirty Three, James Candler Seems To Be Well On The Road To Success He S In Line For A Big Promotion At Onyx Springs, The Treatment Facility Where He S A Therapist He Has A Fianc E, A Sizable House, And A Porsche But He S Falling In Love With Another Woman, He S Underwater On His Mortgage, And He S Put His Hapless Best Friend In Charge Of His Signature Therapeutic Program Even The GPS On His Car Can T Seem To Predict Where He Should Turn Next And His Clients Are Struggling In Their Own Hilarious, Heartbreaking Ways To Keep Their Lives On Track How Can He Help Them If He Can T Help Himself In Tumbledown, Robert Boswell Presents A Large, Unforgettable Cast Of Characters Who Are All Failing And Succeeding In Various Degrees To Make Sense Of Our Often Irrational World In A Moving Narrative Twist, He Boldly Reckons With The Extent To Which Tragedy Can Be Undone, The Impossible Accommodated

  • Hardcover
  • 448 pages
  • Tumbledown A Novel
  • Robert Boswell
  • English
  • 22 February 2018
  • 9781555976491

About the Author: Robert Boswell

Robert Boswell is the author of eleven books, including The Heyday of the Insensitive Bastards, a story collection with Graywolf Press, in April 2009 His novels Century s Son, American Owned Love, Mystery Ride, The Geography of Desire, and Crooked Hearts His other story collections Living to Be 100 and Dancing in the Movies His nonfiction The Half Known World, a book on the craft of writing,